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Fri, May 07

Kingman-area Flag Fire update: Pine Lake residents can return home

This photo by the Bureau of Land Management shows the Flag Fire burning in the Hualapai Mountains.

This photo by the Bureau of Land Management shows the Flag Fire burning in the Hualapai Mountains.

KINGMAN – Residents of the Pine Lake community, which was evacuated on Sunday due to the Flag Fire in the Hualapai Mountains, are now allowed to return home.

The evacuation order was lifted at 10 a.m. Friday, April 30, Mohave County announced in a news release. The Mohave County-owned Hualapai Mountain Park will remain closed to visitors.

“Once returned to your home, we ask that residents minimize their activity outside and away from their homes, as firefighters and heavy machinery will be moving around the community,” the county wrote. “Incident Management crews will remain on site for the foreseeable future monitoring fire activity and assessing the area for potential dangers. A road block will be in place on Flag Mine Rd. and off road activity in the area will be strictly prohibited.”

Crews working the wildfire, which has burned 1,279 acres and is now 34% contained, are continuing efforts to ensure the fire’s perimeter is secure.

Southwest Area Incident Management Team 1 wrote in a news release the morning of Friday, April 30 that thanks to the efforts of firefighters and the precipitation received Tuesday, April 27, the Flag Fire has remained within its current footprint for the past two days.

However, the release noted that wildland fires typically burn in a mosaic pattern, leaving many interior islands of unburned vegetation. Those area have the potential to show more active fire behavior as conditions dry in the area of the fire.

“Fire crews continue working to make sure the perimeter of the fire is secure,” the management team wrote. “This is being accomplished by strengthening containment lines, by clearing more vegetation, as well as looking for and extinguishing any heat adjacent to the containment line that may challenge the line as the weather becomes hotter and drier. Until these actions are complete, fire managers cannot be sure that the fire will not escape to resume as a threat.”

Heavy truck traffic, bulldozers and other equipment along access roads remain, resulting in those roads being difficult and hazardous. Those conditions have prompted partial closures of BLM roads 7101 and 7178.

There are 327 firefighters working to contain the blaze. The cost of fighting the fire has reached about $1.4 million, Mohave County reported.

Information provided by Southwest Area Incident Management Team 1 and Mohave County

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